Satiated Saturday: Vegetarian Thanksgiving Roundup

This is my second thanksgiving as a vegetarian, but the first where I will actually be at a thanksgiving dinner.  I usually prefer to spend my thanksgiving at a museum and thinking critically about American history, and in fact history as a whole.  But, in order to participate in thanksgiving with my family  I need to have some vegetarian options for myself.  Because I don’t have as many of these in my own arsenal, I’ve rounded up a bunch of resources for you me and you guys.

Satiated Saturday

The Veggie Table | A vegetarian blog with its own roundup of recipes, but all of these are original and created by the author Laura K. Lawless.

Veg Kitchen | Another roundup from a vegan blog, and I think most of these are original recipes too.  All vegan things are safe for vegetarians, but remember that not all vegetarian things are safe for vegans, so if you have vegan friends over for thanksgiving, remember that they might need separate things as well.

Buzzfeed actually has a handful of vegetarian/vegan thanksgiving recipe roundups, so here we go.  Pure Links | Brussels Sprouts For Thanksgiving | 29 Side Dishes | 37 Delicious Vegetarian Recipes For Thanksgiving | 22 Delicious Meatless Mains | 41 Delicious Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes

Chef In You | A vegetarian thanksgiving roundup from 2009.  There is everything from soup to risotto on this list, so it’s sure to have something for you.

The Pioneer Woman Stuffing | Substitute veggie broth for chicken broth in this recipe and you can make your own stuffing from scratch.

Satiated Saturday | Shameless self-promotion: you should check out my Satiated Saturday category on my blog

Vegetarian Gravy | This is my vegetarian gravy recipe, and I love it.  I’ll be making it for my family to share the joy that is delicious meatless gravy.

Easy Italian Bread | My Italian bread recipe adapted from Bakers Banter would be delicious on the side of your tofurkey.

Roasted Almonds | Roasted almonds would make a great side, especially if you’re the only vegetarian and you have a hard time getting family to let you in the kitchen on Thanksgiving.  They’re easy and fast.

Remember: if you check the ingredient list you can find lots of vegetarian stuffing mix, and mashed potatoes are always vegetarian.  If you’re like my family you could make an antepasto tray/spread and not let anyone else eat it.  (We haven’t actually made an antepasto in years because our thanksgivings are weird, but they were my favorite as a kid).  Try this tutorial from Martha Stewart, and this one from Giada de Laurentiis.

Happy Thanksgiving to my American readers!


Halloween: A History

Happy Halloween!


Halloween has always been my favorite holiday, and a big part of that was knowing the history of Halloween.  Thanks to an incredible movie called The Halloween Tree (it’s also a book!) I learned a lot about the history of Halloween and associated traditions.  In honor of my favorite holiday, let’s dive into the history of Halloween.

Halloween: A History

Before Halloween was a holiday for children to dress up like monsters and gather candy, or a holiday for adults to wear skimpy and/or ironic costumes to party, Halloween was All Hallow’s Eve.  All Hallow’s Eve, also known as All Saints’ Eve, comes the night before All Saints’ Day, a day to remember your dead.


But even before it was a Catholic holiday, Halloween was Samhain, a Celtic holiday celebrating the harvest and remembering the dead.  Because of the transitional nature of the season, going from summer into winter, celebrants believed that faeries, and the souls of the dead, could cross into the human world with ease.  These faeries weren’t the Disney kind though.  These faeries were malicious and mischievous, and in order to protect yourself and your family, you had to make offerings to them to keep them from, say, burning down your cottage.


People would light bonfires to keep away the evil spirits, and wear masks to disguise themselves within their ranks.  Although let’s be real, the “ranks” were probably just other celebrants.  (But isn’t it fun to imagine it was a bunch of faeries and demons and ghosts wandering around Ireland?)  Trick or treating began as a threat, that if you didn’t offer these faeries and other evil spirits a treat, they would play a trick.

Happy Halloween

When Christianity swept into the region Christian priests and missionaries appropriated Halloween, among other holidays, to facilitate easier conversion of the locals.  Ironically enough, later Christians rejected the holiday as pagan, from Puritans in the sixteenth century to modern fundamentalists who use “Hell Houses” to try to prevent sinning.


Because of the puritans and other sects who rejected Halloween, it faded to the background until waves of immigration from Ireland and Scotland brought the holiday back.  By the early twentieth century Halloween had once again become a mainstream holiday.  Complete with creepy children’s costumes ca. 1950s.


Of course, the United States isn’t the only place that celebrates October 31.  Many places celebrate the Catholic holiday, and many others celebrate local traditions.  The most famous is, of course, Día de Muertos – the Day of the Dead.  Because I have never celebrated Día de Muertos and I don’t want to accidentally insult celebrants, let me direct you to some great resources to learn more.

This Halloween, I’ll be watching spooky movies, listening to Dracula on audiobook, playing in the leaves with my dog, and probably not handing out candy as there are like 2 children in my neighborhood.  For more Halloween check out my All Hallows Reads recommendations, and the Legend of the Jack O’Lanterns.

July In History: Week 2

Joan of Arc

July 7:

1456 – A second trial was held for Joan of Arc, 25 years after she was executed.  Her mother convinced the inquisitor, who convinced the Pope to allow it.  At this trial, she was acquitted of heresy, and in fact the then-current inquisitor applied a charge of heresy to the former inquisitor, who convicted Joan.  The new charge claimed that the old inquisitor used a trivial clothing law to convict her when really he was executing a secular vendetta.  Joan of Arc was acquitted, and became a saint in 1920.


1834 – Riots began in New York against abolitionists and the abolition movement.  They went on for four days.


1863 – The United States held their first ever military draft during the Civil War.  The rich could get an exemption, but it cost $300.  Later the same month there were huge draft riots in New York.  (But I’ll get to them next week).


1928 – The Chillicothe Baking Company of Missouri sold sliced bread for the first time.  The inventor of sliced bread, Otto Frederick Rohwedder, turned 48 the same day.


1946 – The first American saint was canonized – Mother Francesca Cabrini.

King Charles II of England

July 8:

1099 – During the First Crusade the Christian soldiers marched around Jerusalem in a religious procession.


1663 – King Charles II of England granted John Clarke’s request for a royal charter to found a new colony.  That colony was Rhode Island.


1853 – American sailor Commodore Matthew Perry sailed to Japan.  He brought a treaty requesting the opening of trade with Japan.


1948 – The United States Air Force accepted their first female recruits.  Kind of.


1970 – President Richard Nixon delivered a speech to congress outlining the new official policy of the United States government on Native Americans: self-determination.  This led to a law in 1975.

President Zachary Taylor

July 9:

1540 – The Church of England annulled Henry VIII’s marriage to Anne of Cleves.


1816 – Argentina declared its independence from Spain.


1850 – President Zachary Taylor died. Some people think he was assassinated by poison.  He was succeeded by Millard Fillmore.


1868 – The United States ratified the Fourteenth Amendment, which guaranteed full citizenship to all African Americans, and the right to vote to male African Americans.  It also guaranteed due process, a major part of American law.


2011 – South Sudan became an independent nation.  They separated from Sudan.

William I of Orange

July 10:

988 – The Norse King, Glúniarin, came to an arrangement with the High King of Ireland, Máel Sechnaill II, which founded the city of Dublin.  Glúniarin also agreed to pay taxes to Mael Sechnaill and follow Irish law.  (At the time called Brehon Law).


1553 – Lady Jane Grey became, for nine days, queen of England.  She is often considered so inconsequential that she is left off lists of English monarchs.


1584 – William I of Orange was assassinated in Holland.


1778 – The French King Louis XVI declared war on England in support of the American Revolution.


1921 – Belfast Bloody Sunday.  In Belfast there was mass rioting in support of Irish independence from Britain.  The rioting was met with enormous violence by British forces.  Ten people died that day, and in the next few days another 6 were killed.  This was one of the only instances in which there was out and out fighting between the IRA and the British forces.  The more familiar Bloody Sunday was in 1972.

Alexander Hamilton

July 11:

1740 – A pogrom forced Jews from Little Russia.


1804 – Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton dueled, and Hamilton was fatally wounded.


1864 – The Battle of Fort Stevens was fought in the Civil War.  Confederate soldiers tried to capture Washington DC, but they were rebuffed.


1921 – William Howard Taft, 27th president, became Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court.


1960 – Harper Lee published To Kill A Mockingbird.

The Rolling Stones

July 12:

1543 – King Henry VIII of England married Catherine Parr, his final wife.


1804 – Alexander Hamilton died of wounds inflicted by Aaron Burr in the previous day’s duel.


1806 – Liechtenstein became an independent nation, following the Confederation of the Rhine.


1812 – The United States invaded Canada as part of the War of 1812.


1962 – The Rolling Stones performed their first concert, at the Marquee Club in London.


This Week in History: July 1-6

I’m trying to bring this series back this month.  For each week of the month of July I’m going to make a post about historical happenings that week.  Each day has five items, with links to more information.  

Battle of Malvern Hill by Currier and Isles

July 1:

1837 – England and Wales implemented a system to record all births, deaths, and marriages.

1862 – Battle of Malvern Hill (American Civil War).

1890 – Telegraph cable made near-instant communication between Canada and Bermuda possible.

1942 – First battle of El Alamein (World War II).

1960 – Somalia became a free, independent nation.

President James Garfield

July 2:

437 – Valentian III became full emperor of the Western Roman Empire (Byzantine Empire).

1679 – Daniel Greysolon de Du Luth led the first European expedition into what is now Minnesota.

1881 – Charles J. Guiteau shot President James Garfield, who died of his wounds 17 days later.

1890 – Congress passed the Sherman Anti-Trust Act.

1976 – North Vietnamese officials declared the creation of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, uniting north and south Vietnam, and obliterating the Republic of Vietnam.

William the Bastard

July 3:

1035 – William the Bastard became the Duke of Normandy.

1767- Adresseavisen wasfounded.  It is the oldest newspaper in Norway that is still published in 2014.

1775 – George Washington took control of the Continental Army.

1848 – Peter von Scholten officially freed all slaves in the Danish West Indies.  This represented a successful year-long plot by enslaved people to abolish slavery in the Danish West Indies.

1913 – Confederate veterans reenacted Pickett’s charge, and were met by Union veterans offering friendship.

Lewis Carroll (self portrait ca. 1856)

July 4:

1776 – The Second Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence.

1826 – Thomas Jefferson, and John Adams both died on the fiftieth anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence.

1827 – New York State abolished slavery within its borders.

1862 – Lewis Carroll began telling Alice Liddell the story that later became Alice in Wonderland.

1879 – British troops captured, and then burned the Zululand capital Ulundi, which ended the Anglo-Zulu war, and forced the Zulu king Cetshwayo to flee.

Twenty-Sixth Amendment at NARA

July 5:

1884 – Germany made Cameroon a colony.

1950 – The Knesset of Israel passed the Law of Return which allowed all Jews in the world to emigrate to Israel.

1954 – The BBC broadcast their first ever news bulletin on television.

1962 – Algeria gained independence from France and became its own nation.

1971 – The United States voting age became 18 rather than 21 with the passage of the twenty-sixth amendment.


Tune in again on July 6 for another installment of July’s history.

American April

I’ve been in a bit of a rut, blogging-wise.  I just can’t seem to find the inspiration and write.  Most of my writing mojo is going into cover letters and job applications.  But I’ve recently started  making youtube videos, and I’m starting a series there called American April.


All month long I’ll be making one or two videos a week about a topic, event, or person in American history.  It will focus mostly on early American history because that’s what interests me most and it’s my channel.  So if you’re interested in learning about American history and watching me look silly, subscribe to my channel and watch the videos.  I’ll also be posting related information here on the blog as well, so look out for it here.

The first video goes live tomorrow, but the introduction video is up today.  I’ll embed it below.



Plus bonus ASL lesson at the end of the video!

Wanderlust Wanderlist

Wanderlust Wanderlist

I have a wicked case of wanderlust.  I’ve always had one, but it’s gotten worse the older I’ve gotten.  The list of places I want to go grows longer and longer. This is just a sampling of the places on my wanderlist.  

Damascus, Syria

Damascus is one of the oldest cities in the world.  It’s been continuously inhabited since at least the second millenium BC, and boasts an amazing, rich history.  Damascus definitely occupies one of the spots on my list.

Cardiff, Wales

Floyd is Welsh.  It comes from Llwyd via Lloyd, originally meaning grey.  I’ve never been out of the US, but one of my first stops would be Cardiff.  Partly for the connection to my heritage, partly because of the connection to the world of Doctor Who.  Both Doctor Who and Torchwood were filmed there, and the city played a key role in Torchwood.  It’s a beautiful city I’d like to see in person.

London, UK

Who doesn’t want to see London?  Having grown up in New York, I have a healthy appetite for all things city.  London has pubs from the seventeenth century!  My historian heart speeds up just thinking about this city!

Paris, France

Another one that’s on everyone’s bucket list.  Really, what I’d love would be to just travel the entire continent of Europe, but that’s probably not possible, so I picked a few cities in Europe I want to see the most.  Paris used to not be one of them, because I had a distaste for all things French after a terrible experience with a bad French teacher.  Then, I got into the world of tumblr and pinterest and saw Paris in the details.  I saw photos from people’s trips, read their stories, watched their videos and gifs.  And I totally fell in love.  It’s back on the list.  (Plus, the Fitzgeralds lived in Paris.  I’m totally obsessed with Jazz Age American expats in Paris).

Cairo, Egypt

I think I get it from my mother that I’m so weirdly fascinated with Egypt.  She always has been, and she always took me to any museum that had an Egypt exhibit, especially the Brooklyn Museum.  In fact, if you read my post Why History, you’ll know that my entire outlook changed while in that museum looking at a piece of papyrus from the Book of the Dead.  Needless to say, I’d want to travel all over Egypt and see all of the ancient sites.  Especially the Valley of the Kings.  If you’re also interested in Egyptology, head over to the Google+ circle; I’m in it and always find cool things to read there.

San Francisco, CA

Shamefully, I’ve never been west of Kansas City.  Most of my travel has been along the East Coast and in the Midwest.  San Francisco has been on my wanderlist since I was a little girl and watched Charmed for the first time.  So much media since has been set there that I feel like I’ve gotten a taste of the city, but just enough to make me want more.

Rome, Italy

My mom’s family is Italian.  I cook Italian.  Everyone always says I have a lot of my nonna and my bisnonna in me, but I never met them.  I’ve wanted to travel to Italy forever, and Rome has a vast history that I’d love to explore.  Not to mention, I could brush up on the Italian I haven’t used in four years.  Italy, Italy, Italy!

There are so many more places on my list (Seattle, Byblos, Delhi, Cape Town, Stockholm, ahhh!) but I’m leaving this list at these seven.  I could go on forever!  Where is on your list?



Whether you’re having turkey, tofurkey, cornish game hens, or chinese takeout, enjoy your time with family and friends.  I also encourage you to use this time to reflect on American History and what exactly it means to you.  Only by thinking critically about our own history can we improve the world in which we live.

P.S. Check out this youtube video to learn how to sign some awesome Thanksgiving signs in ASL!